01 Feb The weeping of the vines
One of the most important and uplifting moments for the winegrower is the first “teardrop” of the vine. We call this the “weeping of the vines”, when the vine’s sap drips out of the cuts left by pruning. Each plant is pruned at the start of winter so that the vine emerges rejuvenated and with its productive life lengthened. The “weeping of the vines” is the first visible manifestation that the plant is coming back to life after its winter rest during the coldest months.
Normally this exciting moment takes place when the temperature of the soil rises, to about 10 ℃. It is then that the roots begin to take in moisture and the sap begins to rise. It comes up from the roots to nourish the vine and when it reaches the cuts left by the pruning and wounds scar and heal. The weeping of the vine signifies a new dawn in the life cycle of the vine, and of all nature and life.
The weeping of the vines normally occurs in the months of March or April with the arrival of spring, and when what is known as the bioclimate index (a formula that links the number of hours of sunshine and sunlight with the moisture and temperature levels) reaches the values that see the biological awakening of the vine.
In recent years, climate change has been accompanied by rising temperatures, and the weeping of the vines is happening a lot earlier. This year the tears began to flow at the start of March, a good while before the official arrival of spring. The temperature of the earth reaches 10 ℃ and the roots awaken earlier, as a result of global warning. And although we are not happy with this disturbance of the vine’s natural cycle, we can only hope that the plant grows strong and healthy, and keeps on giving us the perfect concentration of sugar, colour and acidity over future harvests and wines.